Six recipients of the Programang Agraryo Iskolar (PAI) in Region VIII joined the thousands of other graduates who earned their college degrees this year.
Three scholars graduated from the Eastern Samar State University (ESSU) – Main Campus and one each from the Visayas State University (VSU) Tolosa, Leyte Campus, Southern Leyte State University (SLSU) Tomas Oppus campus and Naval State University (NSU) in Naval, Biliran.
All three graduates from ESSU in Borongan City graduated with a degree in Engineering: Grace Lumaghos and Christian Jay Lopido finished Civil Engineering, while Andrie Caspe completed a course in Electrical Engineering.
Meanwhile Gabriel Abad, Alma Labastida and Aigy Rose completed BS Fisheries (VSU), BS in Information Technology (SLSU) and BS Education (NSU), respectively.
The six graduates are dependents of agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) that made them qualify to avail the PAI offered by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR).PAI is among the numerous support services extended under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP).
DAR started offering the scholarship program to deserving dependents of ARBs in 2003. Since then, 2,494 recipients have already graduated from various courses all over the country as of 2012.
According to DAR Regional Director Eliasem Castillo, 108 recipients have earned college degrees in Eastern Visayas this April. He added that many of these graduates have landed better paying jobs both in the region and in Metro Manila.
In 2009, one of the PAI recipients placed 5th in the Agricultural Engineering Board exam. Currently he is in Belgium taking up advanced studies.